Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Title

Impact of Leadership Effectiveness and Organizational Climate on Academic Achievement in Memphis City Schools' Alternative High Schools

Date of Award

2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D. in Education

First Advisor

Douglas R. Davis

Second Advisor

Susan McClelland

Third Advisor

Joe Blackbourn

Abstract

The primary purpose of this study was to conduct an investigation to determine the relationships between leadership effectiveness, organizational climate, and academic achievement in Memphis City Schools' alternative high schools. In this quantitative study, the Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) was used to gather leadership effectiveness perceptions, and the Gallup Q12 was used to gather organizational climate surveys from the four regional alternative high schools in Memphis City Schools. The survey instruments were distributed to over 120 principals, teachers, and educational support staff with 103 (85.83%) responding. Analysis of variance (ANOVA), two-way analysis of variance (Two-Way ANOVA), and a Pearson's correlation were used to examine the relationships between the independent variables of leadership effectiveness and organizational climate and the dependent variable of academic achievement. The study yielded significant findings. First, leadership effectiveness had a potentially significant impact on academic achievement. An ANOVA and the Two Way ANOVA showed leadership effectiveness has a potentially significant relationship with academic achievement as measured by the English II and Algebra I End-of-Course examinations. Organizational climate did not have a significant impact on academic achievement. Leadership effectiveness and organizational climate were found to have a highly significant relationship. Additionally, leadership effectiveness and organizational climate were highly correlated to each other. When alternative high schools' leadership effectiveness perceptions increased, so did their positive organizational climate scores. Therefore, leadership effectiveness and organizational climate have a significant relationship for fostering positive work environments when combined with respected leaders in Memphis City Schools' alternative high schools. Leadership effectiveness and organizational climate when combined were not significant variables when compared to academic achievement. Prior research suggested both variables were significant when implemented over an extended period of time. Survey data was taken over a two-week window, and test scores were used from one cycle of the English II and Algebra I End-of-Course examinations. When combined, both variables did not have a significant impact on academic achievement as measured by the English II and Algebra I End-of-Course examinations. These findings will provide practitioners and legislators with a greater understanding of alternative schools in Memphis and should direct policy decisions and legislation to enhance academic achievement. Further research is needed to examine if leadership effectiveness and organizational climate impact academic achievement over an extended period of time or through other academic measures.

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